I remember when I was a kid, I loved to draw. As with any kid, I soon learned that the real skill with that whole pencils-and-paper caper was not knowing what to draw, or how to draw, but more when to stop. A great firetruck or jet fighter soon becomes a train wreck of scribbles and smudges if you don’t resist that temptation to make “one last improvement” to you masterpiece. And in a funny way, the custom bike scene is not so different from your average kid’s drawing, and I’m not talking about the drooling, tears and wet pants. A potentially great custom can all too easily stray into the no-man’s-land of cheap eBay tack and gaudy baubles if it’s owner doesn’t know when to stop. But what’s just right? How do you know when a little bit more is gilding the internal combustion lily? Here’s a bike builder with all the answers, and a obvious ability to crown a design with an exhaust that is as much welding masterpiece as it is a last full stop at the end of a Shakespeare play.
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It’s hard to believe its been a year since we featured Yuri Shif Customs (YSC) jaw-dropping creation they called ‘The Machine’. What we love about this builder from Belarus is he is always experimenting with different styles of bikes, and this time it’s right up our alley. Yuri’s exquisite Triumph café racer is so clean and lean with everything being shortened, hidden or removed. At a glance it may seem like a relatively easy look to achieve but when you take a closer look you see the amazing attention to detail. The kind of detail you’d expect from a guy who has won the AMD World Championship and also the Best International Builder award at the Verona Expo. We were surprised to learn that Yuri actually found building a café racer a real challenge. “Standards of building café racers have been developing for decades and seem to be now fixed as undeniable laws” says Yuri. “That’s why it naturally gives much less space for free creativeness than, say, building of a bobber or a chopper.” Even though building a café racer might be a little bit restrictive for a creative guy like Yuri, we still think he’s managed to stamp it with his individual style.
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C-51 Customs are located in Novato in the San Francisco Bay Area. Jason Steed from C-51 has just finished building this beautiful 1977 Triumph 750 T140. The stunning 5 gallon tank was made by The Tank Shop out of Scotland and took 8 months to receive but “was well worth the wait”.
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